refurbishment of a 19th-century residence in portugal


in the heart of a small fortified village in the alentejo region, portugal, co.rp arquitetos has refurbished a house that dates back to the 19th century. this building has countless and distinct occupations and stories, making it a promenade of rural heritage, an archive of moments of compelling architectural tradition and properly preserved. the negative spaces of the residence were the main focus of the intervention, with the architects putting particular emphasis on redesigning the patio as a familiar relaxation area with a swimming pool.

sunny patio becomes the protagonist of 19th-century house renovation by co.rp arquitetos in portugal

all images courtesy of guilherme blasco augusto


emphasizing the void by drawing the limits


according to co.rp arquitetos (find more here)in the patio area, ‘architecture dematerializes and merges with the surroundings’. specifically, the floor reports the humble previous uses, the walls materialize in the olive trees and degraded tiles of the neighbors, while the ceiling is replaced by the blue sky. this is the premise that the new design intended to transpose into the proposal: the emphasis on the void by drawing the limits.


thus, in the refurbishment, each wall intends to generate a function that contributes to the enjoyment of this space as a private place of tranquillity. the largest barrier of the patio, which offers privacy and ample shade, incorporates a bench forming an ideal spot for living, dining, and resting. almost in a radial transition, the end contiguous to this bench traces a stone bed of local stones, a moment of relationship with water, the presence of a shower as well as the simultaneous function of collecting water from the entire space.sunny patio becomes the protagonist of 19th-century house renovation by co.rp arquitetos in portugal


a place where only serenity, countryside, and family exist


at the sunniest top of the patio, the previous configuration has been adapted to generate a water tank and a place for services. this moment reveals, on the one hand, a total relationship and exposure to the sky and the modest urban surroundings of alentejo and, on the other hand, a sense of intimacy and unobstructed privacy. in the remaining limits of the patio, the architects have formed two grass beds and plantations to further accentuate the void.


in general, the design intends to bring occupants closer to all the elements, generating a full and singular relationship between them. the proposal intends to participate in a new use, a gathering place in which time does not exist, only serenity, the countryside and the family.

sunny patio becomes the protagonist of 19th-century house renovation by co.rp arquitetos in portugal

patio in arronches 3

patio in arronches 4

patio in arronches 1


project info:



name: patio in arronches
architects: co.rp arquitetos
location: alentejo region, portugal



designboom has received this project from our ‘DIY submissions‘ feature, where we welcome our readers to submit their own work for publication. see more project submissions from our readers here.


edited by: myrto katsikopoulou | designboom